Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Detroit Lions trade for Jacksonville Jaguar receiver Mike Thomas

As of right now, an unofficial trade pending a physical would send Jacksonville Jaguar WR/PR Mike Thomas to the Detroit Lions for a mid to late round draft pick (early reports are a 2014 5th round pick). The Lions have already released Justin Miller in a corresponding move.

The 5'8" 195 pound punt-returning receiver makes a lot of sense for the Lions who have struggled to produce yardage on returns. Thomas will likely step in to return punts in relief of running back Stefan Logan who has been prone to putting the ball on the ground this season.

This is the second young receiver the Lions have brought on after they signed Brian Robiskie last week. The two receivers have different skill sets as Robiskie is more of a red zone posession receiver type, while Thomas has the speed to possibly carve out a spot for himself on this offense. Neither recently aqcuired receivers will push Calvin Johnson, Titus Young, or Ryan Broyles for playing time, but the Lions have done well to restock their receiving corps with young, high up-side type receivers.

Stefan Logan's roster spot is likely safe as he is still an asset on special teams and the Lions only have four running backs on the roster currently.

On top of his punt return skills, the size-speed comparison to guys like Darren Sproles, Randall Cobb or even Percy Harvin cannot be overlooked. Mike Thomas ran a 4.3 40 coming into the 2009 combine, a slightly faster time than Jahvid Best. The Lions could be looking to replace an aspect of their offense they have sorely missed without Best. That's not to say the talent level is there with Thomas, but don't be too quick to dismiss this as simply a trade for a new punt returner.

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